This building’s story begins in 1854. At that time, a group of American manufacturers, headed by Cyrus Sullivan Clark, settled in Brompton Falls to harvest pine and spruce and make a fortune on manufactured wood. This involved erecting a dam on the St. Francis River and an adjacent sawmill, the St. Francis Mills, on the Parc de la Rive’s site. Located in close proximity to the Grand Trunk railway, it is the most impressive sawmill in Canada. To ensure the business ran smoothly, Cyrus S. Clark built a large maintenance workshop (with blacksmiths, mechanics, and carpenters) on Saint-Joseph Street near the Parc de la Rive.
As a result of serious financial problems, the St. Francis Mills factory closed its doors in 1893. It was subsequently sold to the Royal Mills Company, which resold all its properties in 1901. The buyer of the old foundry was Onésime Lambert, a businessman who then moved his general store there.
In 1925, Onésime Lambert sold the shop, which then became a dwelling. He did this to avoid competition with his son, Philippe, who started his own general store.